Saturday, November 11, 2006

"Underneath are the everlasting arms."—Deuteronomy 33:27.

GOD—THE eternal God—is Himself our support at all times, and especially when we are sinking in deep trouble. There are seasons when the Christian sinks very low in humiliation. Under a deep sense of his great sinfulness, he is humbled before God till he scarcely knows how to pray, because he appears, in his own sight, so worthless. Well, child of God, remember that when thou art at thy worst and lowest, yet "underneath" thee "are everlasting arms." Sin may drag thee ever so low, but Christ's great atonement is still under all. You may have descended into the deeps, but you cannot have fallen so low as "the uttermost"; and to the uttermost He saves. Again, the Christian sometimes sinks very deeply in sore trial from without. Every earthly prop is cut away. What then? Still underneath him are "the everlasting arms." He cannot fall so deep in distress and affliction but what the covenant grace of an ever-faithful God will still encircle him. The Christian may be sinking under trouble from within through fierce conflict, but even then he cannot be brought so low as to be beyond the reach of the "everlasting arms"—they are underneath him; and, while thus sustained, all Satan's efforts to harm him avail nothing.

This assurance of support is a comfort to any weary but earnest worker in the service of God. It implies a promise of strength for each day, grace for each need, and power for each duty. And, further, when death comes, the promise shall still hold good. When we stand in the midst of Jordan, we shall be able to say with David, "I will fear no evil, for Thou art with me." We shall descend into the grave, but we shall go no lower, for the eternal arms prevent our further fall. All through life, and at its close, we shall be upheld by the "everlasting arms"—arms that neither flag nor lose their strength, for "the everlasting God fainteth not, neither is weary."
...CH Spurgeon
photo

'Remember My Chains' -- Prayer for Persecuted Christians This Sunday
By Allie Martin
November 10, 2006

(AgapePress) - Christians in the United States are being encouraged to join in a corporate prayer effort for believers worldwide who face persecution.

Sunday, November 12, is the annual International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church. Christians in America are asked to pray for more than 200 million believers who suffer for the faith in Christ. Pastors are being encouraged to incorporate sermons about the persecuted Church into their Sunday services.

Dr. Carl Moeller is president of
Open Doors USA, a ministry that helps raise awareness of the persecuted Church worldwide. Moeller says it is important for Christians in free nations to remember those in persecuted countries. He reminds believers that when the Apostle Paul was in prison, he asked his fellow believers to "remember my chains." the rest

Partial-birth deceit
TODAY'S EDITORIAL

The Washington Times
November 11, 2006

Amid the election reaction on Wednesday, the Supreme Court heard two cases concerning a federal ban on partial-birth abortion. It is encouraging at the least that the court even agreed to hear the cases, considering that in 2000 a 5-4 court struck down a Nebraska ban on this gruesome procedure. As was her habit, former Justice Sandra Day O'Connor cast the deciding vote. Could the court be in the process of reversing itself? Let's hope so.

But first we should remind readers just what happens during a partial-birth abortion, since so many news outlets tend to use as technical language as possible. For instance, while you won't find any description of the procedure in the New York Times story on the hearing, here's how The Washington Post put it: "It generally involves the breech delivery of a fetus, followed by the collapsing of its skull to permit removal." Contrast that with how the conservative National Review described it in a recent editorial: "Partial-birth abortion involves the partial delivery of a child, the puncturing of its skull, the removal of its 'intracranial contents,' and then the delivery of a dead baby or extraction of its parts." Both are technically accurate, but you decide who's trying to fool whom.
the rest

Episcopal parish, diocese reach accord
By Julia Duin
THE WASHINGTON TIMES
November 11, 2006

An Episcopal congregation in Woodbridge has become the first to strike a deal with the Diocese of Virginia about how it plans to leave the Episcopal Church.

All Saints Episcopal Church is one of seven Episcopal churches in Northern Virginia that are considering leaving the diocese because of the Episcopal Church's decision in 2003 to consecrate a homosexual bishop.

The leaders of All Saints, a 500-member congregation, announced Thursday they will cede the church's property to the diocese, which will pay the remaining $188,000 mortgage.

Then, All Saints will rent the property from the diocese for $1 a year for five years while it builds a new 800-seat church on a $2.7-million piece of property it bought in 2001. The site is on 28 acres near the Potomac Mills shopping mall in Prince William County.

"This is very, very encouraging for us," said the Rev. John Guernsey, rector of All Saints. "It helps us move forward."
the rest

Convention May Include a Referendum on Pennsylvania Bishop
11/11/2006

There is a strong possibility, according to Pennsylvania Bishop Charles Bennison, that there will be an attempt made later today during diocesan convention to introduce a motion calling for him to resign or retire. On Nov. 3 the standing committee filed a formal
complaint seeking an ecclesiastical presentment over the way Bishop Bennison has handled diocesan finances.

Nearly 20 resolutions have been pre-filed for the one-day annual meeting beginning with Holy Eucharist 7:30 a.m. at Philadelphia Cathedral. None of those resolutions address the standing committee complaints, but convention delegates can introduce resolutions to the floor for debate if a two-thirds majority approves. The possible referendum on his leadership could bring to a climax a three-year-old controversy that largely features two men – Bishop Bennison and the Rev. William Wood, III, standing committee president – who have been long-time friends.


the rest at The Living Church

Princeton dean elected as bishop of Episcopal Diocese of Southern Ohio
By Felix Hoover
The Columbus Dispatch
Saturday, November 11, 2006

The Episcopal Diocese of Southern Ohio elected the Rev. Thomas Edward Breidenthal, dean of religious life and of the chapel at Princeton University, to the diocese's top post yesterday.

Of the 324 delegates who voted, Breidenthal got the nod from 86 clergy and 151 laity on the third ballot. The election was the highlight of the two-day diocesan convention at Shawnee State University in Portsmouth, which began Friday.

The bishop-elect, who was ordained a priest in 1982, has served as professor of Christian ethics and moral theology at General Theological Seminary in New York and as senior chaplain at Harvard School in California, an Episcopal Church Foundation fellow in Oxford. He also has served in two parishes, both in Oregon.
the rest

Terri Schiavo's Former Husband Michael Campaigned for Losing Candidates
by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
November 10, 2006

Springfield, FL (LifeNews.com) -- After he successfully won a court order to kill Terri Schiavo via euthanasia, the disabled woman's former husband Michael pledged to take on pro-life advocates and formed a political action committee to defeat them. However, the candidates Michael campaigned for during the 2006 mid-term elections didn't fare very well.

In fact, every candidate Michael personally campaigned for during the election cycle went down to defeat.

Michael traveled to Colorado twice to campaign against pro-life Rep. Marilyn Musgrave, a Colorado congresswoman. He even attended a late October debate between Musgrave and her opponent and shouted at her when the event concluded.

But his efforts failed as Musgrave defeated her opponent, pro-abortion state Rep. Angie Paccione, a candidate Michael endorsed.
the rest

Risk taker or rift maker?
By RACHEL ZOLL, The Associated Press
Saturday, Nov. 11, 2006

Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church Katharine Jefferts Schori thought the odds she would be elected to lead The Episcopal Church were “ridiculous” - absolutely against her.

“I was a woman, fairly young, I hadn’t been a bishop all that long, and I was serving a diocese that’s not part of the Eastern establishment,” the 52-year-old Jefferts Schori said.

Then came the surprise – she won anyway, in balloting at the Episcopal General Convention this June. Jefferts Schori was installed Nov. 4 as presiding bishop at the Washington National Cathedral, becoming the first woman priest to lead a national church in the nearly 500-year-old Anglican Communion.

“The Bible is full of stories of the younger son being called and the outsider being called,” by God to serve, Jefferts Schori said in an interview this week with The Associated Press. “I think courage is a central characteristic of leadership. If you’re not willing to go into dangerous places, you have no business doing this work.”

The perils for anyone leading The Episcopal Church right now are considerable.

the rest

S African committee approves gay marriage
Copromise: If successful, the Civil Unions Bill will make the nation the first to legalize same-sex marriages in a continent where homosexuality is largely outlawed
AP, CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA
Saturday, Nov 11, 2006

A key parliamentary committee approved proposals for same-sex marriages in South Africa on Thursday, clearing the way for the passage of legislation that would be unique on a deeply conservative continent.

But a compromise thrashed out after months of heated public discussion upset religious groups and traditionalists and left even some members of the governing African National Congress (ANC) uneasy, while gay rights activists said it didn't go far enough.

"It's been a very difficult time. It was a major challenge," said Patrick Chauke, chairman of the Home Affairs Portfolio Committee, which spent weeks touring the country to gauge public opinion and received nearly 6,000 written comments.

The Civil Unions Bill will now go to a full session of parliament on Tuesday. Despite unhappiness in ANC ranks, it is expected to pass as lawmakers have been ordered to follow the party line and told there is little room for maneuver.
the rest

Friday, November 10, 2006

Circumstances may appear to wreck our lives and God's plans, but God is not helpless among the ruins. God's love is still working. He comes in and takes the calamity and uses it victoriously, working out His wonderful plan of love.
...Eric Liddell photo

Diocese, Virginia Parish Reach Agreement on Property
11/10/2006

After nearly nine months of discussions, the Bishop of Virginia, diocesan standing committee, and diocesan executive board reached an agreement Nov. 9 with the vestry of All Saints’ Church, Dale City, on the disposition of property in the event that the congregation votes to end its affiliation with The Episcopal Church and the diocese. A parish meeting to determine affiliation will be held early next month.

Bishop Peter James Lee said it is his fervent hope that the people of All Saints’ will not vote to leave The Episcopal Church.

“Should that be their choice, we will solemnly mourn their departure,” he said. But if the congregation does vote to depart, the agreement “provides a faithful way forward.

the rest at The Living Church

Students at Calif. College ban Pledge of Allegiance
Thu Nov 9, 2006
By Dan Whitcomb

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Student leaders at a California college have touched off a furor by banning the Pledge of Allegiance at their meetings, saying they see no reason to publicly swear loyalty to God and the U.S. government.

The move by Orange Coast College student trustees, the latest clash over patriotism and religion in American schools, has infuriated some of their classmates -- prompting one young woman to loudly recite the pledge in front of the board on Wednesday night in defiance of the rule.

"America is the one thing I'm passionate about and I can't let them take that away from me," 18-year-old political science major Christine Zoldos told Reuters. the rest

Beheaded girls were Ramadan 'trophies'
Stephen Fitzpatrick, Jakarta correspondent
November 09, 2006

THREE Christian high school girls were beheaded as a Ramadan "trophy" by Indonesian militants who conceived the idea after a visit to Philippines jihadists, a court heard yesterday.

The girls' severed heads were dumped in plastic bags in their village in Indonesia's strife-torn Central Sulawesi province, along with a handwritten note threatening more such attacks.

The note read: "Wanted: 100 more Christian heads, teenaged or adult, male or female; blood shall be answered with blood, soul with soul, head with head." the rest

Christian charity bans Christmas themed children's gifts
By SAM GREENHILL
9th November 2006

It is a Christian charity bringing Christmas cheer to needy children abroad.

So its decision to ban Jesus, God and anything else connected with its own faith has been greeted with little short of puzzlement.

Operation Christmas Child, run by the charity Samaritan's Purse, sends festive packages to deprived youngsters in countries ravaged by war and famine.

Donors are asked to pack shoeboxes with a cuddly toy, a toothbrush and toothpaste, soap and flannel, notepads, colouring books and crayons - but nothing to do with Christmas.

Stories from the Bible, images of Jesus and any other Christian literature are expressely forbidden - in case Muslims are offended. the rest

German scholars unveil "politically correct" Bible
Nov. 09

(CNA/CWNews.com) - A group of 52 biblical “specialists” have released a new version of the Bible in which inclusive language and “political correctness” have replaced some “divisive” teachings of Christianity in order to present a “more just language” for groups such as feminists and homosexuals.

According to the AFP news agency, the new version of the Sacred Scriptures was presented at a book fair in Frankfurt. Entitled, The Bible in a More Just Language, the translation has Jesus no longer referring to God as “Father,” but as “our Mother and Father who are in heaven.” Likewise, Jesus is no longer referred to as the “Son” but rather as the “child” of God. The title “Lord” is replaced with “God” or “the Eternal One.” The devil, however, is still referred to with masculine pronouns. “One of the great ideas of the Bible is justice. We have made a translation that does justice to women, Jews, and those who are disregarded,” said Pastor Hanne Koehler, who led the team of translators.

Last December, Matin Dreyer, pastor and founder of the sect “Jesus Freaks,” published the Volksbibel (The People’s Bible), in a supposed attempt to make the message of Christianity more “accessible.” Jesus “returns” instead of resurrects, and multiplies “hamburgers” instead of the fish and loaves. In the parable of the prodigal son, the younger son squanders his inheritance at dance clubs and ends up “cleaning bathrooms at McDonald’s.” story

Mexico City approves gay civil unions
By E. EDUARDO CASTILLO,
Associated Press Writer
Thu Nov 9,

Mexico City's assembly on Thursday voted for the first time in the country's history to legally recognize gay civil unions, a measure that will provide same-sex couples with benefits similar to those of married couples. The mayor was expected to sign the measure into law.

The bill, which does not approve gay marriage, allows same-sex couples to register their union with civil authorities, granting them inheritance and pension rights, as well as other social benefits. Lawmakers were still finalizing the details.

Heterosexual couples who are not legally married can also be registered under the legislation.
The bill was severely criticized by the Catholic Church and conservative civil groups. It passed by a vote of 43-17, with all the opposition coming from the National Action Party of President Vicente Fox and president-elect Felipe Calderon. the rest

New Episcopal Head May Cause Deeper Wounds
By Lillian Kwon
Christian Post Reporter
Fri, Nov. 10 2006

Ecumenical leaders expressed little optimism for the future of the Anglican Communion with the installment of the Episcopal Church's first woman head.

"Sadly, Bishop Jefferts Schori's investiture may exacerbate tensions already existing in the Anglican Communion, which is still deeply wounded as a result of [the Episcopal Church's] actions in consecrating an openly gay bishop and approving same-sex blessings as a local option subject to the approval of the diocesan bishop," stated Jim Tonkowich, president of the Institute on Religion and Democracy.

Jefferts Schori formally took office as presiding bishop of the U.S. Anglican body on Nov. 4, becoming the first woman to hold such a position in the worldwide Anglican Communion. The start of her nine-year term, however, was not a joyous occasion for all Anglicans. Several U.S. Anglican leaders will not acknowledge Jefferts Schori as head, and instead are seeking a new overseer from the global body. Her openness to ordaining homosexuals and blessing same-sex "marriage" has kept conservative leaders at odds with her.

"As bishop of a small diocese that failed to show any substantial growth in attendance, despite being located in the fastest growing state in the nation (Nevada), it is unclear how Schori is prepared to address the same problems taking place in the wider Episcopal Church from her new national office," noted Tonkowich. the rest

Anglican Head and Archbishop of Westminster Launch New Christian Think Tank
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, and the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, have jointly backed a new religious think-tank in an effort to change the climate of opinion about the importance of faith in society.
by Daniel Blake
Posted: Friday, November 10, 2006

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, and the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, have jointly backed a new religious think-tank in an effort to change the climate of opinion about the importance of faith in society.

The ecumenical think tank called ‘Theos’ is modelled on mainstream secular think tanks, such as Demos and the Institute of Economic Affairs. It will undertake research and provide theological commentary on social and political arrangements.

In their joint foreword to the think tank’s first report, "Doing God": a Future For Faith in the Public Square, Dr Williams and Cardinal Murphy-O’Connor argue that religion has rarely been so important in society, or so badly misunderstood. And they claim that society is experiencing a period of collective confusion about the most important questions in life. the rest

Supreme Court Debates Best Method to Execute a Baby
by Matt Bowman
Posted Nov 10, 2006

Can lawyers debate the butchering of innocent children while keeping a straight face, and a settled stomach? The answer, apparently, is "almost." At least that's what I saw from my center seat at the Supreme Court arguments Wednesday on partial birth abortion. I came away with three observations.

First, the pro-abortion side failed to emphasize stare decisis. In a debate last week on C-SPAN, and in conversations in the hallway before the argument, abortion advocates rather forcefully contended that this case is just like Stenberg v. Carhart, already decided in 2000, and that the only difference is the composition of the court. With this argument they hoped to sway not only Justice Anthony Kennedy but possibly Justice Sam Alito and Chief Justice John Roberts. But the two abortion attorneys did not drive home this point at oral argument. Numerous differences between these cases and the 2000 case were emphasized, most notably by Justice Stephen Breyer.

Second, in contrast, the first five minutes of Solicitor General Paul Clement's second session were masterful. He explained that if the court refuses to recognize the state's interest in separating abortion from infanticide, over and above the vague "health" interest that supposedly necessitates partial birth abortion, then the Casey "compromise" crafted by Kennedy himself would be meaningless, and we would go back to the regime of 1980s cases that Casey overruled wherein practically no state interest in pre-born human life was legitimate. This argument not only targeted Kennedy and echoed his dissent in Stenberg, but it visibly quieted the justice, who thoughtfully leaned back in his seat after having engaged in persistent inquiry for over an hour. the rest

Episcopal congregations seeking spiritual shelter in Africa
By SHASHANK BENGALI
McClatchy Newspapers

KAMPALA, Uganda — Angry over their U.S. church's position on homosexuality, a growing number of Episcopal congregations are seeking spiritual shelter thousands of miles away, in the Anglican churches of Africa.

In the Episcopal Church, priests have blessed same-sex marriages and one of the church's bishops is gay. In recent years, dozens of conservative congregations have left the U.S. church and joined Anglican dioceses in Uganda, Rwanda and elsewhere in Africa.

The African churches are big, fast-growing, fervently evangelical and dedicated to conservative social values - including zero tolerance for homosexuality, which nearly all African countries outlaw and which church leaders here believe that the Bible forbids. the rest

Jesus Christ is "Our Vehicle to the Divine?" The Episcopal Church is in Big Trouble
Albert Mohler
Posted: Friday, November 10, 2006

Dr. Katherine Jefferts Schori has now assumed office as the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church USA. A former oceanographer, Bishop Schori is the first women to serve as Presiding Bishop. Her election is one of the most divisive developments within the world-wide Anglican Communion -- and just wait until the global communion gets wind of her theological statements.
In an interview with CNN's Kyra Phillips, Bishop Schori was asked, "So what happens after I die?" Her answer:

What happens after you die? I would ask you that question. But what's important about your life, what is it that has made you a unique individual? What is the passion that has kept you getting up every morning and engaging the world? There are hints within that about what it is that continues after you die.

There is nothing even remotely Christian about that response. This woman is now the leader of the Episcopal Church in America, and she can do no better then this? the rest

The Albert Mohler Radio Program with guest Kendall Harmon (About 12:00 minutes in)

Legal Setback for San Diego Diocese
11/09/2006

Last summer, the rector of St. John’s, Fallbrook, and the bulk of the congregation voted to disassociate from the diocese and The Episcopal Church. Now, a California court has handed a legal setback to the Diocese of San Diego in its attempts to regain possession of the property.

Superior Court Judge Jacqueline Stern recently handed down a tentative ruling that allows the breakaway congregation, now called St. John’s Anglican Church, to remain in possession of the church property. That ruling will become permanent unless she reverses herself after requesting oral arguments which were heard in court Nov. 8 from lawyers representing both the diocese and the Anglican congregation.

In July the congregation of St John’s voted to move under the oversight of an overseas primate while remaining in possession of the parish property. The diocese and some members of the congregation filed a motion to have the members desiring to remain with the diocese declared the rightful trustees of the property.

the rest at The Living Church

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Beware in your prayer, above everything, of limiting God, not only by unbelief, but by fancying that you know what He can do. ... Andrew Murray photo

Archbishop of Canterbury to visit Rome
09 NOVEMBER 2006

ACNS-The Archbishop of Canterbury and Pope Benedict XVIth will have their first meeting later this month since the two met briefly following the Pope’s Inauguration Mass in 2005. The private Papal Audience, on Thursday 23rd November, will be the centrepiece of Dr Williams’ visit to Rome which runs from 21st-26th November. The visit coincides with the 40th anniversary of the historic meeting between Pope Paul VIth and Archbishop Michael Ramsey in 1966.

In addition to a number of private meetings in the Vatican, Dr Williams will also take part in the celebrations marking 40 years since the founding of the Anglican Centre in Rome in 1966 Dr Williams will lead worship for Rome’s Anglican congregations and deliver two keynote lectures - ‘St Benedict and the Future of Europe’ and ‘Secularity, Freedom and Faith’, and meet with the Sant’ Egidio Community.

During the visit the Archbishop will be accompanied by Mrs Jane Williams; the delegation will also include Archbishop Peter Carnley, Co-Chair of the Anglican Roman Catholic International Commission (ARCIC), by Bishop David Beetge, Co-Chair of the International Anglican Roman Catholic Commission on Unity and Mission (IARCCUM), and by Bishop John Flack, the Archbishop’s Representative to the Holy See.

As on previous visits to the Vatican, Dr Williams will be wearing the Episcopal ring which was presented by Pope Paul VIth to Archbishop Michael Ramsey at their historic meeting in 1966.

the rest (including schedule of events)

Internet Bad, MDGs Good for Communion says Former ACC Secretary General
11/09/2006

As secretary general of the Anglican Consultative Council from 1995 to 2005, the Rev. Canon John L. Peterson worked tirelessly to forge closer ties among the 38 autonomous provinces in the worldwide Anglican Communion. That legacy is in jeopardy as a result of theological disagreements, according to Canon Peterson, who now serves as canon for Global Justice and Reconciliation at Washington National Cathedral.

"The geographical areas that have given structural authority to the provinces in the Anglican Communion are breaking down and this could weaken the entire Church. What we have here is a serious breakdown in provincial authority … how this will play out, I have no idea,” said Canon Peterson, who spoke during an Oct. 30 dinner.

According to Canon Peterson, the internet allows a decision made by one church to be immediately known by all other provinces. Thus when The Episcopal Church consecrated an openly gay bishop, that action was instantly noted around the world and triggered protest from some of the provinces which disapproved on theological grounds.

the rest at the Living Church

4,000-year-old cemetery uncovered in Jerusalem
By JASON TAITZ

Containers for ritual offerings, weapons and jewelry are among the finds uncovered this week after builders in Jerusalem's Bayit Vagan neighborhood stumbled upon a 4,000-year-old Canaanite cemetery.

The Israel Antiquities Authority was alerted back in July when builders working on apartment buildings in the Holyland Park Project found evidence of ancient tombs. The remarkable finds were only discovered this week.

The dig's director, Yanir Milevsky, said that "the quantity of items and their particularly good state of conservation will allow us to enlarge our knowledge of farming villages during the Canaanite era."

The authority said the site covered more than 200 dunams and contains human and animal remains, as well as metal and ceramic artifacts and weapons, dating back to between 2,200 and 1,600 BCE. the rest

First Things: Anderson: What Went Right on Tuesday
November 9, 2006

Ryan T. Anderson writes:

I’m no expert when it comes to analysis of political trends, party politics, or electoral strategy. But Tuesday’s election seems noteworthy on a couple of points. And as we’ll see, certain Catholic bishops may have played a central role.

First, this election was decidedly not an affirmation of liberal policies or liberal politicians. For starters, the now partyless Joe Lieberman defeated Ned Lamont. The liberal Republican Lincoln Chaffee also lost.

The election was a vote to replace Republicans, who have controlled the Congress for twelve years and the White House for six. This is usual for sixth-year elections, as Ramesh Ponnuru points out: “In the last nine sixth-year elections, the president’s party lost, on average, 34 House seats and seven Senate seats.” This year, the replacement was only possible because the Democrats ran fairly conservative candidates and hid Howard Dean and Nancy Pelosi from the public eye the month before the election.

Of course, one of the leading conservatives and the brightest defender of the poor and unborn was defeated: Rick Santorum. For many in the NARAL and LGBT lobbies, this was a scalp they’ve long coveted. But notice who they had to enlist to beat Santorum: a pro-life, Catholic democrat: Bob Casey Jr. And consider Harold Ford, a self-described “Jesus-loving, gun-supporting believer that families should come first, that taxes should be lower and America should be strong.” This is a Democrat. And, although Ford lost his race in Tennessee, he is typical of the candidates put in place to run. Jim Webb, who defeated the Republican incumbent in Virginia, is another clear example of this. Moderate to conservative Democrats were the ones who won contested elections. Liberals did not.

the rest

'Nativity' to premiere at the Vatican
By Lorenza Muñoz, Times Staff Writer
November 9, 2006

New Line Cinema's upcoming film, "The Nativity Story" about the days leading up to Jesus' birth will have its worldwide premiere at the Vatican, according to people familiar with the plans.

The $35 million Biblically faithful account of Joseph and Mary's pilgrimage, is expected to screen for a crowd of 7,000 in an auditorium there on Nov. 26. the rest

Movie info

Gays Who Want to Censor Free Speech
by Phyllis Schlafly
November 09, 2006

Same-sex marriage is not the only goal of the gay rights movement. It's becoming clear that another goal is the suppression of Americans' First Amendment right to criticize the gay agenda.
The gay lobby tried a broadside attempt to censor criticism by passing a national "hate crimes" law. Fortunately, Congress didn't pass that law, but gay activists are obviously trying to achieve much the same effect through political pressure and intimidation. the rest

11M Bottles of Acetaminophen Recalled

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A major manufacturer of store-brand acetaminophen recalled 11 million bottles of the pain-relieving pills Thursday after discovering some were contaminated with metal fragments. There were no immediate reports of injuries or illness.

Perrigo Co. said it discovered the metal bits during quality-control checks. The company passed 70 million pills through a metal detector and discovered the metal in about 200 caplets, according to the Food and Drug Administration. The fragments ranged in size from "microdots" to portions of wire one-third of an inch long.

....Wal-Mart Stores Inc., CVS Corp., Walgreen Co. and Costco Wholesale Corp. are among the companies Perrigo supplies with health care products, according to company Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

full story

Republicans' Loss of Pro-Life, Pro-Family Principles Translated into Loss of Power
By Christian Newswire
Nov 8, 2006

FRONT ROYAL, Va. /Christian Newswire/ -- The Rev. Thomas J. Euteneuer, STL, president of Human Life International (HLI)--the world’s largest pro-life, pro-family human rights organization, with over 90 affiliates in 75 countries around the world--has issued the following statement regarding the Republican Party’s loss of power in the U.S. Congress:

“If the Republican Party truly wants to know why they lost, they need only look in the mirror. The most vulnerable seats in both houses were those held by politicians who had abandoned the pro-life and the pro-marriage principles that first brought them to power.

“In many states, voters turned out in large numbers to defend traditional marriage, but voters were not willing to support those who would not support their values. Some so-called conservative senators were all too happy to water down or jettison their ‘unwavering’ defense of the unborn in the name of political expediency and now they have paid the price. Self-described Reagan conservative George Allen bragged about owning stock in Barr Pharmaceuticals--the manufacturer of Plan B--and President Bush’s shameful support of this deadly drug being sold over the counter deflated conservatives’ support of many candidates. the rest

Greg Griffith: Episcopal Majority: Where Are the Throngs? You Said There Would Be Throngs!

Curtis at The Episcopal Majority is thinking - again - about numbers. He can't seem to shake the irony of such puny attendance, at a meeting for a group calling itself the "Episcopal Majority," in the midst of the hoo-ha surrounding +KJS's investiture:

3,200 had planned ahead to be in Washington the next day, the Diocese of Washington with thousands of members is a bastion of liberal church policy, but only 150 showed up for the national organizational meeting of The Episcopal Majority. You might hope 150 people would have shown up at a well-publicized event just to hear Sarah Dylan Breuer give musings from her popular blog.This meeting was pumped as a great gathering of people to defend the Episcopal Church from ominous threats from radical conservatives.

Compare this with the 2,500 conservatives who came from all over the country to Dallas for what was popularly referred to as the Plano conference. It was scheduled to be held in the huge Christ Church in Plano, but attendance forced them to move to a major convention center.


the rest at Stand Firm

Vatican requests Israel ban gay-pride parade

The Vatican urged Israel to ban a gay-pride parade Friday in Jerusalem, saying the march in the city that is holy to Jews, Muslims and Christians would offend the faithful. “The right to freedom of expression,” the Vatican said, “is subject to just limits.” Vatican teaching holds that homosexuals are “intrinsically disordered.” The church, however, says gays and lesbians should be treated with compassion and dignity.

In 2000, the Vatican denounced a gay-pride festival in Rome as an “insult” to Christians. Ultra-Orthodox Jews have protested the parade by burning tires and pelting police with stones. Jerusalem Police Chief Ilan Franco said 12,000 police and paramilitary border police may be deployed to protect marchers. It would be the biggest internal civilian security operation in Israel's history, Franco said. the rest


Letter highlights gay parade tensions
By RACHEL BEITSCH

Several haredi MKs received a letter on Wednesday threatening to rape girls in the haredi community if any marchers in the upcoming Gay Pride Parade were harmed.

"For every marcher you hurt, 10 religious girls will be raped," the letter said. "We swear to take revenge on you with the full gravity of the law. You have been warned."

The letter was signed by an unknown group claiming to be associated with the gay community.United Torah Judaism (UTJ) MK Moshe Gafni submitted a complaint to the Knesset Guard. the rest

Episcopal Church at a crossroads
Consecration of a gay bishop may lead to breakup of church
By LESTER R. DAILEY

PINELLAS COUNTY – Politics isn’t the only place where liberals and conservatives are at loggerheads. Changes that some say are long overdue and others say are self-destructive are driving wedges between Episcopal congregations right here in Pinellas County.

Long-simmering tensions came to a head in 2003, when New Hampshire Episcopalians consecrated a new bishop, Gene Robinson, who is openly gay. Liberal congregations hailed the consecration as a milestone of human equality, but conservative congregations viewed it as a symptom of a moral decay within the church.

“St. Dunstan’s is part of the orthodox side of this argument,” said the Rev. A. Edward Sellers, rector of the 340-member St. Dunstan’s Church in Largo, which he describes as the only conservative Episcopal congregation in mid-Pinellas. “I think the church is too liberal and is headed for a major split, which will not be good for anybody.”

The Rt. Rev. John Lipscomb, bishop of the diocese that includes Pinellas, is relatively conservative and has kept the diocese from becoming too liberal, Sellers said. But Lipscomb will soon retire and Sellers fears what might happen when his replacement is chosen. the rest

Fallbrook church tentatively backed
By Sandi Dolbee
UNION-TRIBUNE STAFF WRITER
November 9, 2006

A lawsuit aimed at putting Episcopalians back in control of a Fallbrook church appeared headed for defeat yesterday, and another priest has left the San Diego diocese in a widening national rift led by conservatives.

A Superior Court judge in Vista issued a tentative ruling that would allow St. John's Anglican Church to remain in the Fallbrook property.

The church was an Episcopal congregation until a majority of members voted in July to break away from the denomination but keep the property and be overseen by an Anglican bishop in Africa.

The Episcopal Diocese of San Diego and St. John's members who didn't want to break away are suing to get possession of the building. They argue that the former officers lost their authority when they voted to leave the denomination. the rest

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


And thus we rust Life's iron chain
Degraded and alone:
And some men curse,
and some men weep,
And some men make no moan:
But God's eternal Laws are kind
And break the heart of stone.

And every human heart that breaks,
In prison-cell or yard,
Is as that broken box that gave
Its treasure to the Lord,
And filled the unclean leper's house
With the scent of costliest nard.

Ah! happy they whose hearts can break
And peace of pardon win!
How else may man make straight his plan
And cleanse his soul from sin?
How else but through a broken heart
May Lord Christ enter in?
...
Oscar Wilde photo

Episcopal priest breaks from Holy Cross in Carlsbad
By: GARY WARTH -- Staff Writer

CARLSBAD ---- The Rev. Michael Nee of Holy Cross Episcopal Church on Sunday became the fifth North County priest this year to leave the denomination as part of a growing schism within the national church.

Nee read a letter of resignation to his congregation on Sunday and announced he was starting the Good Shepherd Anglican Church, scheduled to meet for the first time at 8 a.m. and 10 a.m. Sunday at Congregation Shir Ami, 2210 Encinitas Blvd., Encinitas.

"I'm an outside-the-box guy, so I love it," Nee said about the unusual arrangement that will see a Christian congregation meeting in a Jewish synagogue.

"It was just a natural thing," said Rabbi Melvin Libman of Congregation Shir Ami. "Neighbors do that for neighbors. That's the way you behave.

"The Episcopal Church USA has experienced a division between conservative and liberal members in recent years, most notably in 2003 when an openly gay man was named a bishop.

The confirmation sparked an outcry among many conservative members, including Nee, who at the time told the North County Times: "A fornicator has been elected bishop." the rest

Matt Kennedy: Putting Confidence in the Flesh: Pelagius and the Presiding Bishop

Many in the past few years have drawn apt comparisons between the widespread theological confusion that characterizes the contemporary Episcopal Church, of which our current sexuality debates are symptomatic, and ancient forms of Gnosticism.

“Christian” Gnostics imported the radical Gnostic dichotomy between matter (evil) and spirit (good) into the Christian faith and, in keeping with it, reinterpreted or revised the apostolic teachings and writings.

Doctrinally, this led to various Gnostic rejections and/or revisions of doctrines such as the bodily resurrection (the goal, after all, was to escape the flesh, not to return to it) and the virgin birth (God take on real flesh?) which, embarrassingly for the Gnostics, indicated that God had indeed taken on human flesh in the Person of Christ. Many of these rejections/revisions are still prevalent among “Christian” Gnostics to this day.

the rest at Stand Firm

Bishop Bruno: Transforming Hearts Requires Patience, Teaching
11/08/2006

Progressive activists will have to honor Resolution B033 at least until the 2009 General Convention if they expect to transform the hearts of opponents in The Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion, according to the Rt. Rev. J. Jon Bruno, Bishop of Los Angeles, who gave the keynote address at a Nov. 3-4 meeting of Episcopal Majority held at St. Columba’s Church in Washington, D.C.

Episcopal Majority held its first national meeting on the weekend the Rt. Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori was installed as the 26th and first female Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church. “We chose to meet at this time to show our unconditional support for the new Presiding Bishop,” said the Rev. David K. Fly of the Diocese of Missouri. He was elected president and spokesperson for the group during a steering committee meeting.

Bishop Bruno was interrupted frequently by applause during his address. He counted himself among those pleased with the decision to consecrate New Hampshire Bishop Gene Robinson in 2003, and added that those in attendance had no one to blame but themselves for the negative fallout from that legislative decision.

the rest at The Living Church

Crumbling cathedral gets £300,000

More than £300,000 has been raised in the first month of a campaign to save and restore Canterbury Cathedral.

A £50m fundraising drive was launched last month for the building in Kent which is suffering from "old age and modern pollution".

A cathedral spokesman said more than £300,000 was raised by individual donors alone after the campaign launch.

Previous renovation projects were paid for by fundraising appeals about every 30 years.
The spokesman added a detailed archaeological and condition survey was already under way on part of the cathedral to reveal the full extent of the damage. the rest

Bush Says Rumsfeld Is Stepping Down
Nov 08 1:25 PM US/Eastern
By DAVID ESPO and LIZ SIDOTI
Associated Press Writers
WASHINGTON

President Bush said Wednesday Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld is stepping down and former CIA Director Robert Gates will take over at the Pentagon and in prosecuting the war in Iraq.

Rumsfeld, architect of an unpopular war in Iraq, intends to resign after six stormy years at the Pentagon. The development occurred one day after midterm elections that cost Republicans control of the House, and possibly the Senate, as well. Surveys of voters at polling places said opposition to the war was a significant contributor to the Democratic victory. the rest

Chaplain quits after appearing on gay website
BY EVAN S. BENN
Wed, Nov. 08, 2006

An Episcopalian chaplain resigned from his job at a Palmetto Bay private school after explicit images of him appeared on a gay wrestling website that was circulated this week around the school, school officials said.

Father Adrian Parry, 47, of South Miami, quit his post at Palmer Trinity School on Monday after almost two decades as its chaplain and head of the humanities and history department, according to school headmaster Sean Murphy.

Parry ''had been engaging in what, in our opinion, were inappropriate and unacceptable outside activities,'' Murphy wrote in a statement. the rest

Episcopal Diocese of Pa. calls for an inquiry
Bishop Charles E. Bennison Jr.'s handling of church finances is at issue. A panel wants him ousted.
By David O'Reilly
Inquirer Staff Writer

Citing a "total breakdown of trust," the standing committee of the Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania has asked the denomination's leadership to investigate Bishop Charles E. Bennison Jr.'s handling of diocesan finances and remove him from office.

The committee's actions come as Bennison is still trying to quiet critics who have called for his resignation based on his handling of a sex-abuse case involving his brother more than 30 years ago.

The 10-member committee alleges that the bishop has "repeatedly usurped" its authority and "misappropriated" more than $10 million of diocesan assets to develop a summer camp in Maryland and pay diocesan operating expenses. the rest

Bishop Lee Hospitalized for Possible Stroke
11/08/2006

The Bishop of Virginia, the Rt. Rev. Peter J. Lee, was hospitalized Tuesday for what doctors believe may have been a minor stroke.

Bishop Lee was voting with his wife before 9 a.m. when he experienced “some mild disorientation” that concerned them both enough for them to go to the emergency room at St. Mary's Hospital in Richmond, according to diocesan secretary Peter Getlein.

Following tests, Bishop Lee was admitted for observation. Mr. Getlein noted that Bishop Lee’s health has been good since he recovered from triple heart bypass surgery in January 2005.

the rest

What Katharine Jefferts Schori Does Not Say

An Episcopalian reader, David Gustafson, writes about his church's newest leader,

I think no one on “Mere Comments” has commented yet on the sermons preached by the Episcopal Church’s new Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori at her investiture and installation on November 4 and 5, 2006. Maybe they're not worth much comment. They do not include predictably controversial statements (such as her reference to "Mother Jesus" at General Convention 2006) but the sermons are more remarkable for what they do not say:

Bishop Schori’s sermons make no mention of the cross, nor of Jesus' death, nor of His rising again. Neither sermon uses the word "Gospel" (or the phrase "good news"). Neither sermon mentions Father, Son, or Holy Spirit (though the word "Spirit" does appear.) Jesus is not called Lord in either sermon; and somehow in her November 5 All Saints’ Day sermon, she managed to avoid saying “Christ” or “Christian” altogether.

The sermons make no mention sin, nor of hell or judgment. The November 5 sermon does not use the word "salvation" at all, and the November 4 sermon uses it only once, where it is equated with "our [the Episcopal Church's] health as a body"; and that usage is typical of the entire sermon: It employs some conventional Christian vocabulary, but it does so only in order to address this-worldly concerns that the Church shares with secular social welfare agencies.

the rest at Mere Comments

Commentary on Schori's "Mother Jesus" Sermon

When Pastors Fail to Practice what they Preach
Ray Pritchard
Keep Believing Ministries

The email began very simply: "I am so discouraged." The day before her pastor had resigned. Twelve years ago she had been brought back to the Lord by a pastor who seemed to be a godly man. Later he left his wife to enter the homosexual lifestyle.

Then came a good pastor who was falsely accused of financial wrongdoing. Though found innocent, he left the church. Then came another pastor who wasn't honest in his financial dealings. This led to a church split. Then there was yet another pastor with serious financial issues that he did not handle properly. Now he is gone. And the woman writing the letter is discouraged and depressed. Here is the heart of the matter:

Are these things typical of churches today? Are my expectations of having a loving church with a heterosexual, honest, committed, holiness-living-and-preaching pastor too high?

the rest

Voters Say 'I Don't' On Homosexual 'Marriage'
By Nathan Burchfiel
CNSNews.com Staff Writer
November 08, 2006

(CNSNews.com) - Voters in seven states on Tuesday voted in favor of amending their state constitutions to define marriage as the union between one man and one woman. That's in addition to the 11 states that voted in similar bans on homosexual "marriage" in 2004.

Tennessee voters accepted their amendment by nearly one million votes, the widest margin of the six states. Other amendments in Colorado, Idaho, South Carolina, South Dakota, Virginia and Wisconsin also passed.

Only Arizona appeared poised to defeat its marriage amendment.

the rest

Chancellor: Episcopal Church Will Prevail in Communion and Courts
11/07/2006

Although The Episcopal Church currently finds itself in uncharted territory both legally over ownership of diocesan property and with respect to its standing within the Anglican Communion, the Presiding Bishop’s chancellor, David Booth Beers, does not anticipate that the Archbishop of Canterbury will make any formal change in the church’s membership status in the Communion nor does he expect any dioceses affiliated with the Anglican Communion Network to attempt to leave.

To his consternation, Mr. Beers feels a badly behaved and vocal minority has left some Episcopalians with the mistaken idea that their church is under siege. He made an exception to his long-standing policy against being quoted by journalists in order to lead a public workshop titled “Legal Issues Confronting Parishes and Dioceses” at an event sponsored by the organization Episcopal Majority. The Nov. 3-4 gathering was held at St. Columba's, Washington, D.C. and attracted about 200 attendees.

“You hear a lot about our being swamped by litigation,” Mr. Beers said. “It has been [former Presiding] Bishop [Frank] Griswold’s belief that this is not an epidemic. We’ll have some troubles. I think he’s been proven right.”
the rest

First Muslim congressman elected

Keith Ellison, a Democrat, has become the first Muslim to be elected to the US Congress by winning a Minnesota seat in the House of Representatives.

He overcame personal attacks emphasising his past association with Louis Farrakhan, leader of the radical Nation of Islam group.

The 43-year-old lawyer sought to play down the issue of his religion and ran on a populist platform.
the rest

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

There is more hid in Christ than we shall ever learn, here or there either; but they that begin first to inquire will soonest be gladdened with revelation; and with them He will be best pleased, for the slowness of His disciples troubled Him of old. To say that we must wait for the other world, to know the mind of Him who came to this world to give Himself to us, seems to me the foolishness of a worldly and lazy spirit. The Son of God is the teacher of men, giving to them of His Spirit - that Spirit which manifests the deep things of God, being to a man the mind of Christ. The great heresy of the Church of the present day is unbelief in this Spirit. ...George Macdonald art

Anglican Report Episode 8

courtesy of AnglicanTV

Televangelists Christen Inspiration Networks' New Center
By The Associated Press
Mon, Nov. 06 2006

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Big names in television evangelism gathered this weekend to break ground for a new broadcast center for the Charlotte-based Inspiration Networks, which is building a $98 million complex in South Carolina.

Pat Robertson of the Christian Broadcasting Network, Rodney Parsley of the World Harvest Church in Columbus, Ohio, and pioneer televangelist Rex Humbard were among the people who came Sunday to what will be a 93-acre campus in Lancaster County, S.C.They condemned commercial television as evil."Television has become America's drug of choice, an electronic Valium," Parsley said.
the rest

Study: Faith Makes Little Difference on Moral, Sexual Rules for 'Buster' Generation
By Allie Martin
November 7, 2006

(AgapePress) - A new study finds that there is a great divide between younger and older Americans when it comes to agreeing on how to live a moral life.

The Barna Research Group study examined 16 different areas of moral and sexual behavior among adults in their 20s and 30s -- a group knows as the "Buster" generation -- and those over the age of 40. According to the study, Busters were twice as likely to have viewed sexually explicit movies or videos during that past month; two-and-a-half times more likely to report having had a sexual encounter outside of marriage; and three times more likely to have viewed pornography online.

Overall, Busters' views on moral and sexual behavior are less conventional than that of their predecessors in 13 of the 16 different areas.

The director of the research, David Kinnaman, says those who identified themselves as Christians were different from non-born again young adults on some issues.

"One of the conclusions from this research is that people's moral profile is actually more likely to resemble or be formed by their interaction," he explains, "and it's more likely to look like their peers than it is to look like their faith."
the rest

The world, the flesh and the bishop
By Bill Murchison
Tuesday, November 7, 200

Not nearly as many people pay rapt, reverent attention to the Episcopal Church as was the case in days of yore, when, seemingly, every other
Wall Street financier, top diplomat and U.S. senator was Episcopalian.

Like other "mainline denominations" of American Christianity, the Episcopal Church has been looking -- not with total success -- for a role to play in the personal autonomy cult we sometimes refer to as modern society.

For all that, Episcopal bishops remain capable of providing food for thought concerning what goes on in modern religion. As did Katharine Jefferts Schori, when the church elevated her last week to the dignity of presiding bishop. My stars! -- as dignified Episcopalians might exclaim -- Not just a bishop of the female persuasion, but one of religious viewpoints that seem, on first as well as second and third acquaintance, to differ sharply from those of 50 years ago. Many find this an encouraging development. Many others scratch their heads in wonderment.

In her installation sermon at the National Cathedral, Mrs. Jefferts Schori portrayed Christian mission as "the health of our neighbors in its broadest understanding." She urged fellow Christians to find their fulfillment in "the courage to challenge our legislators to make poverty history, to fund AIDS work in Africa, the distribution of anti-malarial mosquito nets and primary schools where all children are welcomed."

The kind of world she'd like is one in which "all have access to clean water and adequate sanitation, basic
health care, and the promise of development that does not endanger the rest of creation" -- "a world where no one goes hungry" or "is sick or in prison"; one where "no one enjoys abundance at the expense of another."

Did I miss something? Was Mrs. Jefferts Schori taking office as figurehead leader of a Christian church, or as secretary general of the United Nations? It would not tax the imagination to guess the latter, due partly to the subject matter (human wellbeing), and partly to the politics implicit in all this. (Who makes certain "no one enjoys abundance at another's expense"? Government -- through taxes and regulation.)
the rest

Vote!

ALMIGHTY God, who hast given us this good land for our heritage; We humbly beseech thee that we may always prove ourselves a people mindful of thy favour and glad to do thy will. Bless our land with honourable industry, sound learning, and pure manners. Save us from violence, discord, and confusion; from pride and arrogancy, and from every evil way. Defend our liberties, and fashion into one united people the multitudes brought hither out of many kindreds and tongues. Endue with the spirit of wisdom those to whom in thy Name we entrust the authority of government, that there may be justice and peace at home, and that, through obedience to thy law, we may show forth thy praise among the nations of the earth. In the time of prosperity, fill our hearts with thankfulness, and in the day of trouble, suffer not our trust in thee to fail; all which we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 1928 BCP

First Things: Mathewes-Green: Thoughts on Haggard
November 7th

I was in Denver for about a hundred minutes this weekend. I hadn’t planned it, but when I arrived at the airport Friday morning to begin my journey to Calgary, I was surprised to see that’s where I would change planes. The story about Ted Haggard had hit the news the night before, and I had been for some reason really moved by it. I walked through the Denver airport praying the Jesus Prayer for him: “Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on Ted.” That whatever needed to happen would happen, and that it would be used for Ted’s ultimate healing. And I prayed for his wife, Gayle, and their five children. I cannot imagine their pain.

the rest

Gay 'Marriage' Presider Invites 'the World' to Her Court Trial
By The Associated Press
Tue, Nov. 07 2006

PITTSBURGH (AP) - A Presbyterian minister charged with breaking church law for performing a lesbian ''marriage'' has sent out invitations to her church trial next week.

The invitations from the Rev. Janet Edwards state that she is delighted to have "an opportunity to engage in the absolutely essential discussion that has to go on in the Presbyterian Church over the place of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people among us.

"The invitation ends: "Janet wants the world to come. Feel free to invite anyone.""Wow. It's a real show trial isn't it?" Jerry Van Marter, news director for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for Monday's edition.

Edwards, 56, a parish associate at the Community of Reconciliation Church in Pittsburgh and a minister of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), was charged in September with presiding at the June 2005 wedding in violation of the church's position on marriage.
the rest

New York Plans to Make Gender Personal Choice
By
DAMIEN CAVE
Published: November 7, 2006

Separating anatomy from what it means to be a man or a woman, New York City is moving forward with a plan to let people alter the sex on their birth certificate even if they have not had sex-change surgery.

Under the rule being considered by the city’s Board of Health, which is likely to be adopted soon, people born in the city would be able to change the documented sex on their birth certificates by providing affidavits from a doctor and a mental health professional laying out why their patients should be considered members of the opposite sex, and asserting that their proposed change would be permanent.

Applicants would have to have changed their name and shown that they had lived in their adopted gender for at least two years, but there would be no explicit medical requirements.

“Surgery versus nonsurgery can be arbitrary,” said Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, the city’s health commissioner. “Somebody with a beard may have had breast-implant surgery. It’s the permanence of the transition that matters most.”

If approved, the new rule would put New York at the forefront of efforts to redefine gender. A handful of states do not require surgery for such birth certificate changes, but in some of those cases patients are still not allowed to make the change without showing a physiological shift to the opposite gender.
the rest

Plan to create human-cow embryos
By Fergus Walsh BBC News, Medical correspondent

UK scientists have applied for permission to create embryos by fusing human DNA with cow eggs.

Researchers from Newcastle University and Kings College, London, have asked the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority for a three-year licence.

The hybrid human-bovine embryos would be used for stem cell research and would not be allowed to develop for more than a few days.

But critics say it is unethical and potentially dangerous.
the rest

Against Partial-Birth Abortion
By The Editors NRO

Let us pretend for a moment something that we do not believe: that Roe v. Wade, as modified by subsequent decisions, is now too old to be overruled, and that the Supreme Court should continue to protect abortion from legislative prohibition at any stage of pregnancy. Even on those assumptions, the Court should allow partial-birth abortion to be prohibited. Nothing in Roe commits the Court to keeping legislatures from prohibiting the killing of a partially born infant. The Court mistakenly ruled, in a 5–4 vote in 2000, that legislatures do not have this power. It should reverse itself.

Partial-birth abortion involves the partial delivery of a child, the puncturing of its skull, the removal of its “intracranial contents,” and then the delivery of a dead baby or extraction of its parts. Even many people who favor the abortion license in general think that this procedure should be banned. The case for protecting it from restriction comes in gross and sophisticated forms. Defenders of partial-birth abortion have typically resorted to misinformation: underestimating the frequency of the procedure, falsely claiming that anesthesia kills the fetus while still in the womb, and suggesting that it is done out of medical necessity.

Whether the procedure is “rare” is to some extent a subjective judgment. At least 2,000 partial-birth abortions are committed every year. As Douglas Johnson of the National Right to Life Committee has pointed out, the network news would be running stories about an epidemic if something killed prematurely born infants in neonatal wards so regularly.
the rest

Monday, November 06, 2006


Why does the Church stay indoors? They have a theology that has dwindled into a philosophy, in which there is no thrill of faith, no terror of doom and no concern for souls. Unbelief has put out the fires of passion, and worldliness garlands the altar of sacrifice with the tawdry glitter of unreality. The Holy Spirit cannot conquer the world with unbelief, nor can He save the world with a worldly Church. He calls for a crusade, a campaign, and an adventure of saving passion. For this enterprise He wants a separated, sanctified and sacrificial people.
...Samuel Chadwick
photo

Gay Controversies Overshadow Installment of First Female Episcopal Head
By
Michelle Vu
Christian Post Reporter
Mon, Nov. 06 2006

WASHINGTON – Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori took office as the first female presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church on Saturday amid controversies over her views of homosexual relations and the Ted Haggard scandal.

An elaborate investiture ceremony at the Washington National Cathedral that included flying streamers, multicolored robes, and organ accompanied hymns welcomed Jefferts Schori as the top Episcopal leader as well as the first woman priest to head an Anglican province.

Jefferts Schori’s installment has caused further division in the already divided Episcopal Church with seven conservative Episcopal dioceses rejecting her leadership. The dioceses oppose the new presiding bishop’s support of ordaining gays and permitting blessing ceremonies for same-sex couples among other reasons.
the rest

Dobson, 2 ministers to offer counsel
November 06, 2006
By CAROL McGRAW
THE GAZETTE

The three men chosen to oversee the Rev. Ted Haggard’s spiritual restoration are well-known in conservative Christian circles and are old pros at such work.

James Dobson, the Rev. Jack Hayford and the Rev. Tommy Barnett have been tapped by New Life’s overseer board to “perform a thorough analysis of Haggard’s mental, spiritual, emotional and physical life.”

That includes a polygraph test and extensive investigation, according to the Rev. Larry Stockstill, chairman of the overseer board.

Haggard was fired Saturday from the 14,000-member church he founded, after a two-day investigation by the overseer board of a Denver man’s allegations that he had a sexual relationship with Haggard and had seen the minister take drugs.


Haggard acknowledged “sexual misconduct” in a letter that was read to the congregation Sunday, but he did not specify the misconduct and said not all of the allegations are true.

The men chosen to counsel Haggard are respected in the evangelical community and have been called upon over the years to counsel many other pastors — fallen or not. They range from singer Pat Boone to televangelist Jim Bakker. the rest

Doctors: let us kill disabled babies
Sarah-Kate Templeton, Health Correspondent
November 5, 1006

ONE of Britain’s royal medical colleges is calling on the health profession to consider permitting the euthanasia of seriously disabled newborn babies.

The proposal by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecology is a reaction to the number of such children surviving because of medical advances. The college is arguing that “active euthanasia” should be considered for the overall good of families, to spare parents the emotional burden and financial hardship of bringing up the sickest babies.

“A very disabled child can mean a disabled family,” it says. “If life-shortening and deliberate interventions to kill infants were available, they might have an impact on obstetric decision-making, even preventing some late abortions, as some parents would be more confident about continuing a pregnancy and taking a risk on outcome.”

Geneticists and medical ethicists supported the proposal — as did the mother of a severely disabled child — but a prominent children’s doctor described it as “social engineering”.

The rest

MAS Mobilizing Tens of Thousands of Muslims for Tomorrow's Election

MAS Freedom Foundation Center for Electoral Empowerment is determined to ensure that Muslims in America not be taken for granted, politically.

MAS CEE phone banks have been calling Muslims nationwide to remind them to go to the polls tomorrow and vote. Additionally through the MAS Voting Is Power (VIP) campaign, thousands of robo-calls (Automated phone calls) are being made nationwide to get out the Muslim vote.

The calls are being heavily targeted towards districts where there is a large Muslim population and heavy Muslim turnout could make a significant difference in the elections. Virginia, Florida, New Jersey, Ohio and Texas are a few states that have been targeted.

Also, MAS callers are offering transportation to the polls. The MAS CEE has contacted Muslim taxi drivers in various states, who have volunteered to transport individuals to the polls, especially senior citizens or the physically disabled.
the rest

Woman bishop takes over Church

Katharine Jefferts Schori has taken office as the first female leader anywhere in the Anglican denomination.

Bishop Jefferts Schori, 52, became the presiding bishop and primate of the US Episcopal Church at an investiture service in Washington DC.

She was selected in June to lead the 2.3m-strong Church after narrowly winning a vote.
The choice has proven controversial as most other Anglican Churches around the world do not allow women to be bishops.
the rest

Confirmed: Pope to meet Anglican, Greek Orthodox leaders
Vatican, Nov. 06

(CWNews.com) - The Vatican has confirmed plans for Pope Benedict XVI (
bio - news) to meet with Archbishop Rowan Williams of Canterbury, head of the worldwide Anglican communion, on November 23; and with Archbishop Christodoulos of the Greek Orthodox Church on December 14. Both appointments had been announced last week by spokesmen for the visiting prelates.

The Archbishop of Canterbury attended the Mass inaugurating the pontificate of Benedict XVI, and met briefly with the Pontiff after that ceremony. But his last official visit to the Vatican was in October 2003, for a private audience with Pope John Paul II (
bio - news).

the rest

Episcopal membership loss 'precipitous'
by John Dart

After a period of modest declines and gains, the Episcopal Church has suffered a net loss of nearly 115,000 members over the past three years—with homosexuality issues fueling the departures.

The Episcopal Church, whose active membership has slipped to 2,205,376, has built-in deterrents to growth because Episcopalians have the lowest birth rate among U.S. Christians and nearly 60 percent of the people in the pews are over 50, said Kirk Hadaway, the denomination's director of research.

Though Episcopalians are not known for evangelistic endeavors, the church had offset its death rate and defections with an influx of Catholics and other churchgoers, the formation of new churches and the rising popular interest in spiritual matters. In 2002 the church lost only 8,200 members overall.

"In fact we were actually doing better than most other mainline denominations in the 1990s through 2002, with a few years of growth," Hadaway told the Century. "So it is a precipitous drop in losing 36,000 in both 2003 and 2004, and now 42,000 in 2005."
the rest